Zumaya, who was moved from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL on Monday, participated in a conference call Wednesday with the Tigers medical staff and noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews.
"If he did have a surgical procedure the timetable is not favorable to pitch in 2011," Tigers trainer Kevin Rand. "So Joel has opted to go through another six weeks of rehabilitation to give himself a chance to hopefully pitch later on this summer."
Rand said Zumaya continues to have pain in the tip of his surgically repaired elbow.
Zumaya broke a bone in his right elbow while pitching late last June.
"If that point in time [at the end of six weeks], it is still not favorable," Rand said, "he'll undergo surgery."
Detroit beat the Mariners 3-2 on Wednesday in Seattle.